View Full Version : OT: I need a good booster seat

09-05-2007, 01:38 PM
Hi guys
I was wondering if anyone can recommend a good booster seat for my 4 yo DS, I bought a Graco Big Kid seat and it is so cheap and wobbly, I hate it, I was reading some review on the Graco Turbo Airbooster, it looks nice and comfy, but I was wanting some good advice or recommendations, I would greatly appreciate it...

09-05-2007, 03:18 PM
Do you mean the Graco Turbo Booster? The Big Kid is made by Evenflo. All booster seats do is - boost, so they are all going to feel sort of flimsy, with maybe the exception of some really expensive ones, like the Recaro boosters. If your set on moving him into a booster then you might want to look into the Britax Parkway or Monarch, which offer extra side impact protection (the Monarch is a newer model and offers more SIP along the sides of the body the PW only offers SIP by the head). The Compass B510 is one I've seen recommended a lot and the Turbo Booster.

If you want something that is sturdier and will provide much more protection, especially for a four year old, then I'd recommend a 5pt harness seat. This is what my ds is still riding in actually. He's on the slender side though, so not yet 40lbs, which is the bare minimum weight recommendation for moving up to a booster mode. Another thing to consider is his maturity level and if he stays seated properly 100% of the time in a booster. If he's a wiggler, or likes to put the shoulder strap behind his back, then he really needs to be in a 5pt harness. This site here has a lot of info on why a 5pt harness is safest: http://www.kyledavidmiller.org/pages/4211/Car_Seat_Safety:_5-point_Harness_is_Safest.htm

If you post his weight and torso height (sitting, bottom to top of shoulder), and budget, I can give you some car seat recommendations. :-)


09-05-2007, 03:43 PM
DS has the Britax Parkway. He's had it for almost 2 yrs now and we're very happy with it.

09-05-2007, 03:56 PM
OP here, I am actually thinking he needs to go back to the 5-point harness seat, your definately right that the booster seats are flimsy and he is a big time wiggler, so if you could recommend a good comfy 5-point harness booster seat, that would be awesome, more on the lower end price range, I am buying a stroller for Disney at the same time....

09-05-2007, 04:45 PM
sure, can you post his weight and torso height? I don't want to post the whole entire list. It's pretty long. LOL

09-05-2007, 10:15 PM
If you have headrests, the Cosco Apex is a pretty good one and the least expensive out there. It harnesses to 65# and then is a booster till 100. It's pretty wide though so keep that in mind if space is an issue. We have one as a spare though and it works well. We also have a Sushine Kids Radian 65 and a Britax Boulevard, but there are several others that harness longer as well.

09-05-2007, 11:58 PM
I found the Graco and the Britax to be waaaaay too flimsy for me to be comfortable using. I was considering getting the Compass because we travel quite a bit and I thought it would be great to have a folding seat. At that time I didn't know that the Recaro folds too. Once I found out the Recaro folded it was a no-brainer for me. I got the Recaro Start. We both LOVE it!!! Max loves his "racecar seat" and the comfort factor, and I love the safety factor. It adjusts in more ways than I'd ever imagined, it is tethered, and it is not made of plastic - it will actually never expire either. It is quite heavy and VERY expensive though!!!

09-07-2007, 05:34 PM
Ds6 uses an Evenflo Big Kid Confidence Booster in one car -- it is very heavy and very sturdy (for a booster). The other car has an Evenflo Bolero with the harness removed.

My dd3 rides in Safety 1st Apex 65 seats -- once she outgrows the harness (which shouldn't be for a few more years), it will convert to a booster.

09-07-2007, 07:21 PM
Post your child's torso height (seated - bum to shoulders) and weight and we can give better recs on seats.

09-08-2007, 09:22 AM
Ok, my son weights 39 pounds and he is 40 inches tall, i hope that will help....thanks everyone:thumbsup2

09-08-2007, 09:37 AM
Ok, my son weights 39 pounds and he is 40 inches tall, i hope that will help....thanks everyone:thumbsup2

We really need his seated torso height. That's the most important measurement when looking at a car seat. Can you measure his torso? Sit him against a wall and mark where his shoulders are. then measure from the spot to the floor.

09-08-2007, 09:55 AM
Ok, my son weights 39 pounds and he is 40 inches tall, i hope that will help....thanks everyone:thumbsup2

Well Torso height is more important that overall height because once the tops of the shoulders go past the top harness slots the seat is outgrown by height. Here is a list, and it also lists the highest harness position so you can make a judgement on what seats might last your ds long enough

United States)

Convertible Seats

Britax Marathon, Decathalon, or Boulevard (http://www.britaxusa.net/products/browse.aspx) (MA/DC/BV). 17 in top slots, RF 5-33lbs, FF up to 65lbs in 5 point harness. Awesome seats, allow for rf tethering, has lockoffs to replace locking clips, very easy installs, many bells and whistles that make them easier to use correctly every time, lasts most kids to age 5-6y/o. 220+ Check this FAQ thread HERE for a description of the three (http://boards.babycenter.com/n/pfx/forum.aspx?tsn=1&nav=messages&webtag=bcus9421&tid=2214).

Fisher Price Safe Voyage Deluxe (http://www.specialtybaby.com/fiprsavodeco1.html) (FPSVD).17 inch top slots, RF 5-33lbs, FF up to 55lbs in a 5 point harness. Made by Britax, sold under the FP name- basically a stripped down Britax Marathon. Great seat, awesome price $129 (regular 199$), and will last most kids to age 5-6 y/o.
DISCONTINUED DUE TO POOR SALES-- As of right now Britax is still manufacturing them but check with the store to see what the date of mfgr is that they are shipping. You may only be able to find these online.

New Evenflo Triumph Advanced (http://www.toysrus.com/sm-evenflo-triumph-advance-lx-convertible-car-seat-hansen--pi-2734223.html) RF to 35lbs; FF to 50 lbs. Max harness height of 17". The new Triumph has the infinite harness adjuster too.. no rethreading the harness! Much nicer than the old Triumph! Much taller shell than the old Triumph too! Priced at $130-150. VERY new seat so not in many stores yet I donít think. We think it will be small enough for newborns!

Sunshine Kids Radian (http://www.tinyride.com/category.aspx?SID=3&Category_id=178&filterID=1001037000&src=GGL&typ=Search&cpn=sun_radian&kwd=[sunshine+kids+radian]&s_kwcid=sunshine%20kids%20radian|693917905). 18 in top slots, RF 5-33lbs, FF up to 65lbs in 5 point harness. Great seat, only second to Britax because it has some compatibility issues in some vehicles when installed with seatbelt. Really good seat otherwise, allows for RF tethering, lasts most kids to 6-7y/o. 8yr lifespan (most have a 6yr) $175+ www.skjp.com has the manual available for viewing.

Forward facing only seats (child must be over age 1, and 22#ís)

Safegaurd GO (http://www.safeguardseat.com/go/index.htm). Harnesses to 60#ís, becomes a no back booster after. Top slots are 17 to 17.5 inches, needs adjustable headrest behind it for support. Requires top tether anchor. Child must be 30#ís to use. Retails for $179

Britax Regent (http://www.britaxusa.net/products/detail_regent.aspx)(used to be Husky). KING of car seats is right! Harnesses to 80#ís. Top slots are 20 inches. Requires a top tether after child is 50#ís. Retails for $220-$260. Not good for children under 2yo. Requires college degree to read the manual.

Ride Safer Vest (http://www.safetrafficsystem.com/). A vest that comes in two sizes, Small 35-60#ís, Large 50-80#ís. The vest can be used with lap only belt. Requires top tether anchor & headrest. Retails for $89-$99. Great for 3 across situations in small vehicles! Tether strap HAS to be used if child is under 6 yrs old. http://www.safetrafficsystem.com/

FF/Harness Combo Harness/Booster Seats
this is the only combo seat that goes past 40lbs
Cosco/Safety 1st Apex (http://www.specialtybaby.com/sa1stsibiboc.html). Only higher weight Combo (FF harness/Booster) seat that harnesses to 65#ís. Top slots are 17-1/2 inches high. Requires adjustable headrest or a very tall vehicle seatback behind it for support. Then becomes a very nice BUT VERY WIDE booster that doesnít fit small children well.. This seat is outgrown totally when the tips of the childís ears reach the top of the vehicle seatback. (Fully extended it has a back height of 32.5in tall) The new blue/black and all the brown ones have EPP Foam in the headrest. Retails for $89-150. (the one linked above is $90 and has EPP foam in the HR).

The Regent is the longest lasting seat because it has the tallest top harness slots. I'm actually considering one for my ds fairly soon since he's outgrowing his current seats-Britax Blvd and 2nd seat Evenflo Bolero, by height but he's not yet 40lbs - or mature enough to stay seated properly in a booster yet. The Radian comes in a close 2nd because the top slots are only 18" but according to the mfgr this is one seat that allows the tops of the shoulder to go past the top harness slots as long as the ears are stillunder the top of the shell. Still not sure how I feel about that though since in other seats the shoulders going past the top slots can cause spinal compression in an accident and I'm not sure how Sunshine Kids could have tested for that. According to them it has something to do with the frame being made out of steel though.


09-12-2007, 08:25 AM
Ok, my son weights 39 pounds and he is 40 inches tall, i hope that will help....thanks everyone:thumbsup2

Check out the Compass seat. My DD is still in her Britax Marathon but we have the Compass for traveling. It is a great booster. My DD is 42" tall and 39 pounds. It folds and even has a bag for travel.